Natalma’s Last Daughter Follows Her More Famous Sisters

The prestigious meeting at Randwick continued with its second day on Saturday. Last column was dedicated to pedigrees of the first day Gr.1 winners and this time we will focus our attention on a single one, or to her family to be more precise. The horse in question is the winner of the Queen Of The Turf Stakes (Gr.1) Amanpour, another Gr.1 winner from the family of the legendary Natalma but the very first one from the branch of her daughter Born a Lady, foaled in 1981.

Natalma, whose major success on the racecourse was the third place in the Spinaway Stakes, gave birth to fourteen foals and it would suffice to name the most famous one, Northern Dancer, to have an idea about Natalma’s influence on the thoroughbred breeding. But as has just been said, Natalma had fourteen horses of whom twelve raced and ten won. Besides the Horse of the Year and champion Northern Dancer, black-type victories were scored by the geldings Native Victor and Regal Dancer and her last product, the filly Born a Lady. More four of her progeny were black-type placed.

Six of her sons went to stud, mainly thanks to the fame of the first of them, Northern Dancer. Northern Native, full brother of Northern Dancer, was active in Japan, where he produced seven black-type winners; Northern Ace, also by Nearctic, spent his stud career in Scandinavia, without much success. Nostrum (by Dr. Fager) fared better: he stayed in Northern America, produced fifteen black-type winners and his name still can be found in pedigrees of major winners, such as the winner of the 2010 Gazelle Handicap (Gr.1) No Such Word, whose granddam is by Nostrum. Transalantic, another full brother of Northern Dancer, started his career in Northern America, then was bought by Japanese breeders but left no significant trace at stud. The blood of the last Natalma’s son who was given an opportunity at stud, the third in the Plate Trial Stakes, Tai by Buckpasser, features in pedigrees of today’s black-type winners through his daughter Lady Mainland, granddam of the Gr.1 winner in Venezuela, the filly Mayflower, or the colt Joe Pike who finished second in a Gr.1 race in Puerto Rico last year.

Natalma had five daughters and all of them were given opportunity at stud. The oldest of them, Arctic Dancer, foaled in 1963, raced just twice and was placed once. Her start at stud was impressive as her third product, the filly La Prevoyante, winner of twenty-five races, unbeated as two-year-old in twelve races, won several championship titles and became the 1972 Horse of the Year in Canada. Unfortunately La Prevoyante died of a ruptured lung suffered during the running of the Miss Florida Handicap and, thus, as if foretold the fate of this family which has not given any Gr.1 winner – unless we count in the Indian Gr.1 races, internationally classified as listed, since then we would have to include Sweeping Success, the winner of the Indian 1,000 Guineas, second in the Indian Derby, Oaks and Saint Leger. In the United States, however, the family was very close to a Gr.1 achievement and the most precious one for that matter. It was just by four lengths that the grandson of Arctic Dancer, Proud Citizen, lost to War Emblem in the Kentucky Derby.

The second daughter of Natalma, Native Era, was unraced and produced six winners of nine foals, the most successful one being the Canada listed-placed Northern Sister, later to become a successful dam in Australia, where she produced, among others, the winner of the Queen’s Cup (Gr.3) Sky Trist. This part of the family, too, was successful in India, where the granddaughter of Native Era, Thanksgiving (Riyahi), won the Indian Oaks (L), a race with the Gr.1 status in India.

Natalma’s daughter Spring Adieu (Buckpasser), three-time winner in the USA, has produced just two winners and none of her progeny was successful in black-type. Despite this it is through her that Natalma’s influence – if we leave aside Northern Dancer – most prominent in thoroughbred breeding worldwide. It is just thanks to her grandson, the top sprinter and, above all, excellent sire Danehill, 3x3 inbred to Natalma, the world record holder in the number of products – stakes winners. His dam Razyana produced, besides Danehill, four more black-type winners, three of them also by Danzig. Razyana’s daughters were successful at stud too, namely The Minstrel’s daughter Euphonic established a successful branch, but from the perspective of black-type horses, the part of the family established by Roberto’s daughter You’re My Lady, two-time winner in the United States, is more successful today. You’re My Lady spent half of her stud career in the United States, where she produced two successful followers (Gabbing Gloria and My Lady’s Key) and the second in South Africa, where two of her daughters built upon her achievements. One of these is the listed winner Daphne Donnelly, granddam of the South African Derby (Gr.1) winner Bouquet-Garni.

It was the fourth daughter of Natalma, the unraced Raise The Standard by Hoist The Flag, who was the most successful at stud. Her single black-type winner, the Gr.1 placed Coup de Folie, proved to be a true jewel at stud, having produced three Gr.1 winners including the two-year-old champion and later exceptionally successful sire Machiavellian. He is the proof that Natalma’s family can not just transfer genes of the great dam Almahmoud but is also a great producer of sires. To name all excellent thoroughbreds whose pedigrees is influenced by the Raise The Standard family would need a whole book, since besides Coup de Folie her other daughters such as Bonita Francita, the dam of the great Orpen, were successful at stud and we will find black-type progeny in the families of her three more daughters.

Natalma’s last daughter, Born A Lady, who inspired this column, was born when Natalma was twenty-four. This is not exactly the age when broodmares are able to produce black-type winners but Born A Lady won her black-type status by winning the Pearl Necklase Stakes at Laurel Park. She produced eleven horses, of whom eight raced and five won. The most successful of these was her son Arrowtown by Mr Prospector, winner of seven races including black-type, placed in several group races in the United States. The Japanese-trained Lady Bonanza by Seeking The Gold performed very well too, as she was the winner of four races and was the runner-up in the Nakayama Flower Cup (Gr.3). Lady Bonanza returned to the United States for her stud career and although she has been given opportunity with elite sires such as Storm Cat, A.P. Indy or Medaglia d’Oro, none of her progeny has scored a major success. Her half-sister Little Arrow (Kingmambo), despite lack of racing career, has produced the Japanese Gr.3 winner and the third in the Japan Derby Antonio Barows. Another daughter of Born A Lady, Lambada Lady (Seattle Slew), was sold to Japan too and recently drew attention to this branch of the family – her grandson Tagano Azaghal (Bago) won the Falcon Stakes (Gr.3) in late March. So far the most successful branch of the family was established by Born A Lady’s daughter named – quite succintly – Natalma’s Dream. She never raced and her daughter Stormy Dream by Storm Cat, placed in her single race, did not belong among champions either. Stormy Dream was sold at the 1996 Keeneland November Sale for USD 115,000 and went to Australia, where she stayed until 2007, when she was sold to the Philipines. She left six of her progeny in Australia (one foal accompanied her to the Philipines), including the chestnut Newscaster, daughter of the champion-sire Marscay. She placed just once but proved to be a treasure at stud, as she produced three black-type winners and her firstborn daughter Swing Dance (Danehill Dancer) produced two horses placed in stakes. The first black-type winner out of Newcaster was the gelding Turf Express (Danehill Dancer), the winner of twelve races, including the VRC Fashion Stakes, and third in the Sandown Guineas (Gr.2). The three-year-old Sports Edition (Northern Meteor), a listed winner, is successful too. His one year older full sister Amanpour won her fourth, and the most precious, race in the Queen of the Turf Stakes on Saturday. And it was not a great achievement only for her – it was the first Gr.1 achievement of the family established by Natalma’s daughter Born A Lady.

Born A Lady has thus become the fourth daughter of Natalma to establish a family with a Gr.1 winner. Or the fifth if we consider the Indian Oaks as Gr.1 – according to the local classification instead of the international one. What is important, however, is that Natalma’s daughters have managed to establish successful families and that the whole Natalma’s family is very active and successful.

Miloslav Vlček

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